12th EUSBSR Annual Forum: 5 days, 40 events and 1700 participants

The 12th EUSBSR Annual Forum, held online from Kaunas and Klaipeda, has come to its close. During the Forum, the UBC organised or co-organised 10 sessions, with 18 cities’ presentations and around 200 participants attending the sessions.

The theme of this year’s EUSBSR Annual Forum was Revitalise, Recover, Recharge. The sessions included “Enhancing stakeholder and citizen engagement within the EUSBSR Green Transition”, “Cities leading positive social transformations”, “Cities as leaders in Green recovery” as well as three Networking Village sessions.

But the Annual Forum was more than that. New ideas for further cross-border cooperation, new partnerships established and new opportunities developed for the years to come! Let us hope that it will materialise into new very concrete initiatives and projects. A warm thank you to all the organisers for good cooperation! 

Youth is not only future, youth is today

Many UBC member cities participated actively in the sessions and plenaries. The Annual Forum ended with the Youth Event and closing plenary on Friday 1 October. The closing session was moderated by Marko Paunovic, Head of UBC's Brussels Antenna.

“Sometimes we underestimate young people. Young people bring us different, out-of-the-box ideas. We need to listen to their modern ways of participating and approaching issues and each other”, emphasized UBC President and Deputy Mayor of Kaunas Mantas Jurgutis in the closing plenary.

“The systems we have now have not been designed to reach young people. We should change them to enable easier youth participation, like digitalising the elements of democracy. Very often the young are at forefront of transitions”, stated Thomas Matthew, Board Member of the European Youth Forum.

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The Annual Forum of the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region is the largest yearly event of the Strategy. It brings together all the stakeholders implementing the EUSBSR as well as other participants wishing to contribute to managing the common challenges the Baltic Sea Region faces. This year, the Forum was co-organised on 27 September– 1 October by UBC, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania, Kaunas City Municipality, and Klaipėda City Municipality. The project is co-financed by Interreg Baltic Sea Region Programme.

More information on the Annual Forum 2021: https://eusbsr2021.eu/

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